Memory Lane - Match 9

Games against Arsenal, Luton, Southampton and that Efan Ekoku-inspired nightmare against Norwich 20 years ago.

Gunners, Canaries, Hatters and Saints.

Forty Years Ago 1973-74 Match 9

Arsenal may have felt that in 1972-73, the football gods had been against them as they had entered the latter stages of that campaign with high hopes that they could match their achievement of winning the FA Cup and League double. But a run of only one win in their last five league games meant that the title had not returned to Highbury. In the FA Cup Arsenal had been odds on favourites to reach the Final with the most likely outcome being a re-run of the 1972 final with Leeds United.

Fate though, had deemed that the script hadnt gone to plan as Sunderland had beaten the Gunners at Hillsborough and the Arsenal fans had been left doubly disappointed that their club had failed to become the first to have won the double Double.

Steve Burtenshaw had tendered his resignation as Arsenal coach following the Gunners hammering at Sheffield United (0-5) as Arsenals start to the season had begun to falter. Despite having beaten Manchester United (3-0) in their first home game, Arsenal had then lost three out of their next four games including that embarrassing defeat at Bramall Lane.

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Queens Park Rangers boss Bobby Campbell had been appointed to replace Steve Burtenshaw and this had seemed to have an immediate effect as Arsenal had travelled to Carrow Road and had beaten Norwich City (4-0). Arsenal arrived at Goodison having won three league fixtures from their previous four fixtures and looked to be a much sterner test for Everton than they had been just a month previously. Arsenal sat a point in ahead of the Blues in the league table.

Dave Clements the most recent arrival at Goodison Park, when Billy Bingham had bought him from Sheffield Wednesday for 60k, explained how he had been persuaded to sign for Everton due to the clubs illustrious history and by his previous association with Billy Bingham, when his new club boss had been the manager of Northern Ireland.
Dave had also wanted to prove himself in his favoured midfield position rather than continue to play at left-back, a position that his previous club had utilised him in. Roger Kenyon said that Howard Kendall had been the best captain he had played for, mostly because Howard had taken the middle ground between Brian Labones calming influence and Alan Balls vociferous style.

Roger who had been appointed acting skipper in the absence of the injured Howard Kendall, hoped that he could take on the good points of his predecessors, although he admitted that it would be a difficult transition for him due to his outspoken nature, he would have to curb his natural instincts and become more of a diplomat in his new role.
Roger said that he had been honoured to become the Captain of Everton Football Club albeit on a temporary basis and he also said that every young lad that joined the club would have dreamt about being the Everton Captain.

If my memory serves me and it doesnt always this game was not one for the purists as it had become a war of attrition as both sides had intended to keep their goal intact, rather than achieving the win. A goalless draw had seemed inevitable, until John McLaughlin had scored the winner at the Park End with a low drive from the edge of the area. I might of course be wrong but Im fairly sure it had been this game that my mate and I kept referring to for years as the worst game wed ever seen. The photograph in the next programme of Johns goal declared in its caption that Binghams Bombers had lured Arsenal keeper Bob Wilson out of his lair and Everton had scored the goal that ensured that the Blues unbeaten home league run, remained intact.

1973-74 First Division Saturday 29 September 1973
Arsenal @ Goodison Park Score 1-0 (Mclaughlin)
Attendance: 31,359
Lawson Darracott Mclaughlin Clements Kenyon Hurst Harvey (Husband) Buckley Lyons Harper Connolly

Thirty Years Ago 1983-84 Match 9

When Luton Town travelled to Goodison Park they had been sat five places above Everton in ninth place, a point better off than the Blues at the start of play. The Hatters would have hoped to have fared better than they had on their previous visit to Goodison when they had lost 5-0, thanks to goals from Bailey, Sheedy, Curran and Heath who had bagged himself two goals.

Indeed the most recent meeting of the two clubs at Kenilworth Road had seen Everton once again go nap as they had left Luton Town (5-1) with three points following their victory, the goals having been scored by David Johnson, Kevin Sheedy (2) with two and Graeme Sharp (2) also with two, one of which had been a successfully converted penalty.

Following that defeat by Everton (1-5), Luton Town had been odds on to be relegated, especially so as their main rivals Manchester City had left Brighton with all three points. To add to the precarious nature of their stay in the top flight, the following Wednesday, Luton had lost at Old Trafford, that meant that Lutons final game of that season would decide their First Division fate.

One small consolation for the worried Hatters fans was the fact that at least their own teams fate had been in their own hands as they had had to travel to Maine Road to face fellow strugglers Manchester City. The outcome of that crucial encounter with City (1-0) was a victory for Luton Town courtesy of the substitute Raddy Antics 85th minute goal. All of those readers who are old enough will probably remember with great clarity the dance of delight that Luton Towns manager David Pleat had performed on the pitch at Maine Road which had followed Luton Towns victory.

Only Les Sealey the goalkeeper signed from Coventry City for 120,000 had been added to the squad that had escaped relegation last term. So far in the 1983-84 season Luton Town had remained unbeaten at home with 10 points taken from a possible 12. On the road the Hatters only had 3 points on the board, gained from their victory over Leicester City (3-0) at Filbert Street, having lost to Arsenal (1-2), Manchester United (0-2) and Nottingham Forest (0-1) in their other away fixtures.

Newsdesk reported that AEK Athens manager John Barnwell had words of praise for former Everton player Trevor Ross, especially as Trevor had scored a stunning goal for his club in the European Cup Winners Cup tie against Ujpest Dozsa. Ticket prices for the Chesterfield League Cup second leg tie at Goodison had been published and they had been reduced by an average of 25%. The highest prices were 3.20 for the Upper Bullens, Main Stand and Top Balcony and the cheapest had been for the ground at 1.50p.

Peter Reid revealed that he had been more pleased with the six points the club had gained, rather than the congratulations he had received for the goals he had scored in Evertons away victories at Spurs and Notts County. Although he admitted that he had taken some extra satisfaction from his 20 yard strike at Notts County as it had beaten former Everton and Bolton goalkeeper Jim McDonagh who had been a team-mate of Peters at Burnden Park.

In stark contrast to their previous League game at Notts County, Everton had dominated this game. But after dominating for long periods, Everton conceded a goal, scored by Paul Walsh (77) in Lutons best period of the match and the Toffees had been a touch fortunate, not to have conceded a second in that ten-minute period.

Howard Kendall said that his players had to become more relaxed in front of goal, as he had felt that if his team had failed to score early in a game then the players had tended to snatch at their chances and Mr Kendall had feared that the longer the run continued at home the more anxious his players became, it had become a vicious circle that needed to be broken.

1983-84 First Division Saturday 15 October 1983
Luton Town Score @ Goodison Park Score: 0-1 Attendance: 14,325
Southall Harper Bailey Ratcliffe Higgins Reid Steven Heath Sharp King Sheedy: Unused Sub: Richardson

Twenty Years Ago 1993-94 Match 9

Everton would have hoped to have continued their recent run of positive results as Norwich City arrived at Goodison Park for this Premier League fixture. Everton had been sat in fourth place in the table, following their memorable victory over Liverpool in their recent league game at Goodison, whilst Norwich City had been just three points behind them, although positioned in eleventh place in the table.

In the inaugural Premier League, Mike Walkers Norwich City had taken everyone by surprise as they had finished in third place, behind Manchester United and Aston Villa. At one point during April 1993, Norwich had actually been league leaders and many neutrals had hoped that the Canaries could have pulled off the unlikely task of finishing as the first Premier League Champions. It wasnt to be, but Norwich City could still be very proud of their efforts and of their achievement of making it the clubs best ever top flight campaign.
The success of that season meant that Norwich City, were involved in European competition although they had to wait on the outcome of last seasons FA Cup Final before their place had been confirmed. Norwich City owed a huge debt of thanks to former Canaries player Andy Linighan whose goal had settled the Cup Final in Arsenals favour and thus opened the door for Norwich to compete in the Uefa cup.

1992-93 had seen goals galore for Norwich City, especially away from home, as they had scored thirty league goals on their travels and 1993-94 had started in a similar fashion as the Canaries had won at Blackburn Rovers (3-2),Leeds United(4-0) and had drawn with Sheffield Wednesday(3-3) and QPR(2-2).

At Carrow Road the story had been very different where Norwich City had only scored one goal, albeit an important one for their fans as it had been enough to overcome their local rivals Ipswich Town (1-0), the other home games had garnered just a point as defeats to Manchester United (0-2) and Wimbledon (0-1) and a goalless draw with Swindon Town (0-0) had somewhat undermined the Canaries outstanding away form.

In the Uefa cup, a three goal margin of victory against Vitesse Arnheim (3-0), would have given the Norwich supporters hope that a turn in fortunes at Carrow Road had begun.
Given Norwichs away form, there is little doubt that this fixture would have presented a stern test of Evertons defence, but the Blues would have hoped for an improvement on last seasons league meeting at Goodison, where Norwich City had emerged victorious courtesy of a Chris Sutton goal.

Whenever Everton play Norwich City, many Blues fans wistfully remember that wonderful sunny day in May 1987 when Everton clinched the League Title with the aid of an early strike from Pat Van Den Hauwe after just 45 seconds. Perhaps what some dont realise is that that triumph at Carrow Road had just been part of a sequence of ten league victories in Evertons final twelve games of that most memorable and successful campaign.

Brett Angell said that he would have loved to have had the opportunity to have played in last weeks derby win but he had enjoyed watching the game from the bench, Brett was hoping to make his debut in the Norwich City fixture as he had been cup-tied for the game at Lincoln City.

Robert Warzycha had changed his mind about Polands chances of qualifying for USA 94 after his team had lost to England (0-3) at Wembley. He felt that Poland would have had to win three out of their remaining four games to have had a chance of making it to the World Cup. Some supporters would have been surprised to see that Bob had been played in the centre of Polands midfield but Robert said that it had been a position that he had been used to when he played for his national side and one that he had been comfortable in, as he had seen a lot more of the ball.

Despite Paul Rideout (13) having given Everton the lead, it turned out to be a game to forget for the club and its supporters, as Norwich City inflicted a heavy defeat on Everton at Goodison Park. Howard Kendall said that he had wanted his team to show the same attitude as they had in the previous week in the Merseyside derby, and Howard felt that his team had done exactly that, but his team had forgotten the basics of defending when Efan Ekoku had raced clear of a static home defence to equalise a minute before half-time. In the second-half things had got worse as Evertons defending had deteriorated and Efan Ekoku and Norwich City had taken full advantage as they had ran out winners by five goals to one, Efan Ekoku had scored four of those goals with Chris Sutton getting the fifth goal on 77 minutes.

Howard Kendall revealed that his altercation with the match officials at the interval came about because he had felt that each linesman seemed to have a different interpretation of the offside rule, one had been flagging if a player had been in an offside position, whilst the other had been waiting to see if the player had interfered with play before he waved his flag.
Howard said that both he and the Norwich Assistant Manager John Deehan had spoken with the Referee, in an attempt to gain clarification on how the officials had intended to enforce the rule in the second-half. Much to Howards annoyance, the second-half had continued in the same fashion, as each linesman continued to interpret the offside law in their own particular way.

1993-94 Premier League, Saturday, September 25, 1993
Norwich City @ Goodison Park Score 1-5 (Rideout) Attendance: 20,631
Southall; Holmes (Preki); Hinchcliffe; Ebbrell ; Jackson; Ablett; Ward (Angell); Horne; Cottee: Rideout ; Beagrie Unused Sub: Kearton

Ten Years Ago 2003-04 Match 9

Southampton had in 2002-03 reached their first FA Cup Final since 1976. That year they had managed to overcome the odds and had won the trophy against the overwhelming favourites Manchester United, Bobby Stokes had scored the winner that had sent the Saints fans home happy, but Southampton had been unable to repeat that achievement in 2003 as they had lost to Arsenal in the final.

Overall the 2002-03 campaign had been a successful one for Gordon Strachan and his Southampton team, they had achieved eighth place in the league and had, courtesy of finishing Runners-up in the FA cup attained a place in Europe. They also had the third highest Premiership scorer in their ranks a certain James Beattie who had knocked in 23 goals for the club.

The 2003-04 season had seen a mixed start for the Saints as they had beaten Manchester United (1-0) at the Dell and had won at Tottenham Hotspur (3-1), thereby hastening the departure of Glenn Hoddle from White Hart Lane, but they had also lost their two most recent league fixtures away to Newcastle United and at home to Middlesbrough by a single goal, with the Saints failing to find the net on both occasions.

Speaking about the medias interest in the young starlet Wayne Rooney, David Moyes said I, for one, had no knowledge of an offer for Wayne Rooney and I wouldnt be encouraging one and neither will the board.

With regards to his rebuilding programme at Everton Mr Moyes said he had been pleased that the supporters had regained their trust in their team and that they were now seeing a team capable of competing with the rest of the teams in the division. A mixture of experienced players and the introduction of younger players such as James McFadden and Joseph Yobo alongside home grown players had been in David Moyes estimation the best recipe to take Everton forward.

Steve Watsons recent hat-trick had inspired a feature on previous Everton players who had matched his feat in the Premier League era. Tony Cottee had managed three goals against Sheffield United (4-2) in August 1993 and again against Swindon Town (6-2) during January 1994. Andrei Kanchelskis scored his hat-trick in April 1996 at Hillsborough, against Sheffield Wednesday (5-2). Southampton (7-1) had arrived at Goodison in November 1996 and had lost, as Gary Speed had scored the seventh goal for Everton to complete his hat-trick. Duncan Ferguson returned to the Everton side in December 1997, following a three match ban and promptly put Bolton Wanderers (3-2) to the sword at Goodison to grab his three goals in what would turn out to be a very important victory.

West Ham United (6-0) who were the visitors to Goodison in May 1999, when Kevin Campbell, who had been a loan player at the time, cracked in a hat-trick that had helped to demolish the visitors. The last player prior to Steve Watson to get a hat-trick in the Premier League for Everton was Nick Barmby who had scored his goals against West Ham (4-0) at Upton Park in February 2000.

Bits N Bobs notes that the longest period without a hat-trick being scored by an Everton player in the top flight was between November 1971 when both David Johnson and Joe Royle had gotten hat-tricks with Joe Royle bagging four in a victory over Southampton (8-0) at Goodison until Bob Latchford had hit four goals against QPR (5-1) at Loftus Road in October 1977.

All the mention of hat-trick heroes from the past hadnt been enough to inspire this Everton side as they had failed to score in front of the Sky cameras. David Moyes had been pleased that his team had defended better since the debacle at White Hart Lane; however, he had been concerned that the chances that had been created had not been taken, but he thought that scoring goals and defending was the responsibility of the team as a whole and not solely down to the individual departments.

2003-04 Premier League Sunday October 19, 2003
Southampton @ Goodison Park Score- 0-0 Attendance: 35,775
Martyn, Hibbert, Naysmith, Yobo, Weir, Watson, Gravesen, Jeffers, Campbell, Carsley (Linderoth), McFadden (Kilbane) Unused Subs: Wright, Unsworth, and Li Tie.

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Reader Comments (3)

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Robin Cannon
1 Posted 25/10/2013 at 07:14:48
Still remember that 1-5 v Norwich well. We scored, looked good, bossed much of the first half...everyone feeling positive. And then Ekoku equalized just before half time and the second half just turned into a farce. Bizarre match.
Karl Masters
3 Posted 26/10/2013 at 00:23:10
You can kind of understand, when you read about Norwich 20 years ago, why our Board appointed Mike Walker. A young, fresh Manager, always looking to be positive. Sounds like someone we know today!

If Roberto does a pre-season tour press conference poolside wearing an orange posing pouch, be very concerned!

Steve Carter
4 Posted 26/10/2013 at 09:16:40
My God, that side v Arsenal looks pretty ordinary.

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